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Pālki at the Rāmnāthi Devasthān

photos of Ramnath and Kamakshi in Palki at Ramnathi Devasthan by Arun Shanbhag

Hindus believe that all things animate and in-animate (manifest or unmanifest) are part of the universal divine consciousness. We generally refer to this divine consciousness as “That”, because any attribute you give it is limiting (see Sant Tulsidas’ beautiful verse describing “That” divine consciousness; also this post on Dwija). In common parlance, we refer to […]

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Pyāsā – Soda at Rāmnāthi

Photos of the Soda store owner at the Neeta Canteen by the Ramnathi Devasthan Goa by Arun Shanbhag

During Maha Shivratri, as I waited for a rickshaw outside the Ramnathi Devasthan, I shot pics of colorful soda bottles arrayed in crates. The hovering owner felt neglected and offers, “Maegel bhī photo kād” (take a pic of me too). I obliged. I loved the confident pose he struck in front of the red wall. […]

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MahāShivrātri at Rāmnāthi

Photos of MahaShivaratri Festival at Ramnathi Goa by Arun Shanbhag

|| Om Namah Shivay || Wishing you all an auspicious Maha Shivratri More on the Ramnathi Devasthan Goa: Pālki at the Rāmnāthi Ramnathi Devasthan, A Konkani Temple Goa, Visiting Ramnathi Dassara: Celebrating Devi’s Grace Flower sellers at the Ramnathi Devasthan Buddha’s Tooth, Peter’s Bones and Jesuits Pope’s Hypocrisy Sacred Places: Avalanche of Christian Aid in […]

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Buddha’s Tooth, Peter’s Bones and Jesuit Pope’s Hypocrisy

pic of Buddha from the RijksMuseum posted by Arun Shanbhag

Circa 1560 CE Portuguese forces based in Goa, India, raided the town of Jaffnapatam, Ceylon (present day Sri Lanka). They looted the temples and pagodas and torched the town. One of the items they stole was a reliquary containing a tooth of Buddha – the Enlightened One. The Buddhist community was distraught and the King […]

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Murals by Mario at Madgaon Train Station

pictures of Murals by Mario at Madgaon Station, Goa by Arun Shanbhag

I am a creature of habit. On every visit to Goa, I follow a similar routine. First I commune with our kuldevata at the Shanteri Kamakshi Ramnath Devasthan in Ponda, then I may get a cup of Chai or two at the local canteen. Perhaps visit the nearby Mahalakshmi Devasthan and the Mangeshi Devasthan; and […]

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Bookseller in Goa

With M & m in Mumbai, I stay at work longer, workout harder and run further. With friends, I laze around more; that means less blogging. But I want to share this beautiful pic of a bookseller I met in Goa. We were on our way back to the Ramnathi Devasthan after visiting some Konkani […]

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Chai Time Two

Chai Time at Ramnathi Devasthan by Arun Shanbhag

After Dhool Bhaet at the Shanteri Kamakshi Ramnath Devasthan, I walked around heavenly rice fields and stopped by the canteen outside the temple for a cup of Chai. Next to me, this gentleman savored his morning cup. He poured it in the saucer, lifted the saucer to his lips and slurped.

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Goa: Visiting Ramnathi

Picture of Lamp Tower at Ramnathi Devasthan, Goa by Arun Shanbhag

After celebrating Meera’s birthday, I make a quick, day trip to visit our Kuladevata (family temple) at the Ramnathi Devasthan in Goa. The early morning flight brought me to Ramnathi at the crack of dawn. The temple was open and I paid my respects to Ramnath as “Dhool bhaet”. From my earlier post on the […]

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Dassara: Celebrating Devi’s Grace

Wishing you all a Wonderful Dassara May you and your loved ones Be blessed by Devi’s Grace! M&M & A

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Mahalakshmi Temple, Goa

photos of Maha Mandapam at Mahalakshmi Temple in Goa by Arun Shanbhag

The Mahamandap (Great Hall) at the Mahalakshmi Temple in Bandivade, Goa provides a therapeutic escape from many of Goa busy attractions. It is a perfect place to sit undisturbed and commune with the divine. On this early morning, regular devotees went about their prayers silently and tourist laden buses had not yet arrived. In front […]

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Sacred Places

It is sad that in India, places of worship are being targeted to achieve political ends, or vent frustrations. This is absolutely wrong! Temples, churches, mosques, and all other places of worship are sacred and should not be pawns in political movements. People should feel empowered to use objective fora to address grievances. Politicians! Make […]

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Portuguese Inquisition and Revisionism

Due to my heritage and interest in Konkani Temples in Goa, and particularly our Kuldevata Ramnathi Devasthan I have been researching books on the Portuguese occupation in Goa. During the Portuguese Inquisition lasting more than 150 years (1560 – 1812), the Jesuits made a systematic attempt at wiping out the Konkani heritage in Goa. Konkanis […]

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Colva Beach – Serenely Beautiful

On our visit to India in June, we paid a short visit to Goa. Starting on the early morning flight from Mumbai and after visiting the Ramnathi Devasthan, we arrived at the beach-front resort in Colva, early in the afternoon. We were so fatigued, both of us promptly fell asleep. The drumming of the heavy […]

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Chai Time

Pics of two guys drinking chai at Kamakshi Canteen Ramnathi Temple Goa Arun Shanbhag

After performing the Lagu Rudra abhishek, an honor accorded the Kulaviis at the Shanteri Kamakshi Ramnath Devasthan, I sneak away to the canteen beside the front entrance. They make the best missal and ussal paav. As I gorge myself, I notice these two guys on a chai break. Both were caught up in their own […]

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Here is Colva Beach Goa!

After blazing a trail through mumbai, goa, austria and switzerland, we returned a few hours ago to an oppressively hot and dusty house. But I so look forward to sleeping in my own bed. Traveling is fun, but living out of a suitcase and washing underwear in hotel sinks, does get tiring after a while. […]

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Young Couple on Konkan Railway

Less than 24 hours after reaching Mumbai, we left for Goa on the Konkan Railway to visit our kuladevata Ramnathi Devasthan and attend my nephew's Upanayana. The night ride is ideal for catching-up on gossip with cousins. Their wives (and M too), are fast asleep and we chat away in peace. Pics from our our […]

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Basilica of Bom Jesus

From my last trip to Goa. The beautiful Basilica of Bom Jesus in Panji. The inside of the church. There was a small private service going on. The crypt with the remains of Francis Xavier The building across the street. The Convent and Church of St Francis of Assisi. Part of it has been converted […]

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Mangeshi Devasthan, Goa

Photo of the Mangeshi Temple Goa by Arun Shanbhag
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Cucumber Seller Smiles

photos of a woman selling cucumbers at the Mangeshi Temple Goa by Arun Shanbhag

Outside the Mangeshi Devasthan in Goa, this lady sold sliced cucumbers. It's a refreshing snack on a hot day. As I composed the pic, I fretted about this guy walking across, but then I noticed her face light up at an approaching customer. For her brilliant smile, and inviting pose, she deserved a post of […]

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Goa Snippets

When in India last September, I made a short trip to visit our ancestral temple Ramnathi Devasthan near Ponda, Goa. The early morning flight reached Goa before 8:00. Enroute to the temple I saw this quintessential Goan field, and had the driver stop. It was a partly cloudy day and the overnight rains had soaked […]

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Konkan Railway: Welcome Aboard!

As we prepare to visit India again, here are a few pics from our 2002 trip. The Konkan Railway serves the Konkan coast from Mumbai to Goa, and down to Mangalore. Since Parashuram reclaimed the Konkan land from the seas, this is the best that has happened to this region. The a/c coaches were very […]